30 FREE things to do in Vancouver this February
Going into February, and still feeling the pinch of the penny on holiday season, heres 30 free things to do in Vancouver this month.
Explore the city and the great outdoors
What: Learn about owls at Burnaby Lake Nature House on February 2. Check out displays, activities and exhibits during the drop-in-style event.
When: February 2, 2020 Time: 2 to 4 pm Where: Meet at Burnaby Lake Nature House, 4519 Piper Avenue, Burnaby Admission: Free
What: Wrap up the weekend with a free movie and popcorn every Sunday night at Bells and Whistles. February’s screenings include Groundhog Day (February 2), Footloose (February 16), and Road House (February 23).
When: February 2, February 9, February 16, and February 25, 2020 Time: 9 pm Where: Bells and Whistles – 3296 Fraser Street, Vancouver Admission: Free
What: Abstract/representational mixed media artist Victoria Mitchell shares her journey of rediscovering her artistic passions, and aims to inspire others to follow their own creative pursuits.
When: February 6, 2020 Time: 7:30 to 9 pm Where: Surrey Art Gallery – 13750 88 Avenue, Surrey Admission: Free
What: Richmond Art Gallery hosts the book launch celebration of Adad Hannah’s The Decameron Retold. This publication is a behind the scenes look of Hannah’s 2019 community project and exhibition of the same name at Richmond Art Gallery. Books will be available for sale, and light refreshments and cash bar will be available.
When: February 6, 2020 Time: 6 to 8 pm Where: Richmond Art Gallery — 7700 Minoru Gate, Richmond Admission: Free, RSVP required
What: Help take care of Surrey’s unique urban forest in Hazelnut Meadows Community Park by removing invasive plants and litter. No experience is required and everyone is welcome to take part. Tools, training, and light refreshments will be provided.
When: February 8, 2020 Time: 10 am to 12 pm Where: Hazelnut Meadows Community Park – 14069 68 Avenue, Surrey Admission: Free
What: The 10th annual Romance Travel Show is Canada’s only national destination wedding and honeymoon expo. Meet international bridal and travel suppliers, check out presentations, enter for prizes, and more.
When: February 10, 2020 Time: 5 to 9 pm Where: Radisson Hotel Vancouver Airport — 8181 Cambie Road, Richmond Tickets: Online, free
What: Yaletown Business Improvement Association presents Illuminate Yaletown, featuring light art installations, activities and entertainment, and more. Illuminate Yaletown will take place for the first time over two-nights, with Vancouver-based Go2 Productions and Tangible Interaction to unveiling installations to pay tribute to the Vancouver 2010 Olympic and Paralympic Winter Games.
Yaletown restaurants and bars will also be honouring the 10th anniversary of the Games with unique cocktails plus screenings of the gold medal hockey game.
When: February 14 and 15, 2020 Time: 5:30 to 9 pm Where: Yaletown — 1200 Block of Hamilton Street & Bill Curtis Square Admission: Free
What: Partners in Parks hosts a Family Day geocache treasure hunt. Form a team and navigate with a GPS unit to find hidden treasure boxes. Participants under 14 years old must be accompanied by an adult. Instruction and GPS units provided. No experience necessary.
When: February 15, 2020 Time: 11 to 2:30 pm Where: Redwood Park — 17900 20 Avenue, Surrey Admission: Free. One person per team must pre-register online or by phone (604-501-5100) for a start time
What: Westminster Savings Family Days invites visitors to tour the exhibition in the Art Gallery at Evergreen and participate in a variety of activities led by Art Gallery staff. On February 15, attendees can take part in Alter Ego Self-Portraits, and on March 21, they can experiment with Illuminated Sketchbooks. There will also be gallery tours at 2:30 pm (English) and 3:30 pm (Korean).
When: February 15, March 21, 2020 Time: 1 to 4 pm Where: Art Gallery at Evergreen – 1205 Pinetree Way, Coquitlam Admission: Free
What: Nikkei National Museum & Cultural Centre is hosting a Family Festival during Family Day weekend. There will be a massive book sale with thousands of Japanese books, manga, CDs and DVDs. Families can also enjoy a Japanese culture corner, games, live entertainment, and more.
When: February 15 and February 16, 2020 Time: 10 am to 4 pm Where: Nikkei National Museum & Cultural Centre – 6688 Southoaks Crescent, Burnaby Admission: Free, though some workshops have a price
What: Richmond Nature Park celebrates Family Day weekend with a variety of events. Go on a special scavenger hunt through the bog, stop by the photo booth, and make a take-home twig picture frame.
When: February 15 to 17, 2020 Times: 11 am to 4 pm Where: Richmond Nature Park – 11851 Westminster Highway, Richmond Admission: Free, though donations are appreciated
What: Learn why raptors are great hunters by chatting with naturalists around displays and a campfire. The Kanaka Creek Watershed Stewardship Centre Open House is also happening, with presentations, tours, and more. Presented by Kanaka Education & Environmental Partnership Society
When: February 16, 2020 Time: 1 to 4 pm Where: Kanaka Creek Regional Park — meet at 11450 256th Street, Maple Ridge Admission: Free
What: Play board games with the family, take part in a scavenger hunt, and pose for a photo with mascot Raj the Racoon at Museum of Surrey’s Family Day.
When: February 17, 2020 Time: 1 to 4 pm Where: Museum of Surrey – 17710 56a Avenue, Surrey Admission: Free
What: There are many Family Day events to check out in New West on February 17, including activities at City of New Westminster Parks and Recreation locations, the Anvil Centre, River Market and the Fraser River Discovery Centre.
Anvil Centre’s Family Fun Zone features Science World on the Road, Magician Peter Rooke, Nintendo games, photo booth fun, crafts, and more. Plus the City’s Parks and Rec department will offer a variety of activities including swimming, fitness classes, skating, arts and crafts and entertainment.
When: February 17, 2020 Time: Various times Where: Anvil Centre – 777 Columbia St, New Westminster Admission: Free
What: Celbrate Family Day with an outdoor adventure at Belcarra Regional Park. Go for a walk through the seaside forest, then share stories and songs around the campfire. Attendees are invited to bring their own marshmallows or campfire treats.
When: February 17, 2020 Time: 10 am to 1 pm Where: Belcarra Regional Park Admission: Free
What: Susan Point discusses her travelling exhibition Spindle Whorl at the Surrey Art Gallery on February 19. The talk will be followed by an audience Q&A.
When: February 19, 2020 Time: 6:30 to 8 pm Where: Surrey Art Gallery — 13750 88 Avenue, Surrey Admission: Free
What: PechaKucha Nights features creative people sharing their works, ideas, passions, and stories with 20 images for 20 seconds each. Hosted by Shadbolt Centre for the Arts.
When: February 19, 2020 Time: 7 to 9 pm Where: Shadbolt Centre for the Arts – 6450 Deer Lake Avenue, Burnaby Tickets: Online, Free
What: Port Coquitlam’s Community Integration Services Society in collaboration with PoCo Heritage Museum and Archives and the City of PoCo hosts a tour of Melissa Park Lodge as part of Heritage Week 2020. Attendees will learn how the historic building was restored.
When: February 20, 2020 Time: 5 to 8 pm Where: Melissa Park Lodge — 2175 Mary Hill Road, Port Coquitlam Register: Online, Free
What: City Centre Community Centre hosts a free, all ages screening of the Disney animated classic Lilo & Stitch. Light refreshments will be provided to the attendees
When: February 20, 2020 Time: 7 pm Where: City Centre Community Centre — 5900 Minoru Boulevard, Richmond Admission: Free
What: Coastal Jazz’s annual mini festival features eight performers and groups, including Lydia Hol & Dawn Pemberton, The Watermill Project, Itamar Erez Quartet, and more.
When: February 21 to 23, 2020 Time: 8 pm (Friday), 1 pm, 3:45, 8 pm (Saturday), 1 pm, 3:45 (Sunday) Where: Performance Works – 1218 Cartwright Street, Vancouver Admission: Free, register online
What: Abbotsford Islamic Center’s 4th annual “Open Mosque Day” is happening on February 22. Take a tour of the Mosque and the display of various exhibition banners. There will also be activities such as Henna tattooing and Hijab-tryouts for kids and women.
When: February 22, 2020 Time: 10 am to 3 pm Where: Abbotsford Islamic Center — 1980 Salton Road, Abbotsford Admission: Free
What: On Saturday, February 22, a free public fan festival will be held at Jack Poole Plaza, the site of the Olympic Cauldron and part of Vancouver Convention Centre’s West Building, which was the International Broadcast Centre during the Games. Festival programming will include athlete meet and greets, stage performances, sport demonstrations, food and beverage, the relighting of the Olympic Cauldron, and other family-friendly activities.
When: February 22, 2020 Time: 11 am to 6 pm Where: Jack Poole Plaza — Vancouver Convention Centre West (1055 Canada Place, Vancouver) Admission: Free
What: The provincial government’s Robson Square Ice Rink is open for the 2019/2020 season, and as per tradition, skating is free for all ages. Wedged under the covered outdoor plaza at Robson Square, the rink is operated seasonally by the government when temperatures begin to dip.
Skating is free for all ages for those who bring their own skates. Those without skates can rent a pair on-site, for a fee. An on-site concession stand will also serve warm drinks and snacks.
When: Daily until February 29, 2020 Time: Sunday to Thursday from 9 am to 9 pm; Friday and Saturday from 9 am to 11 pm. Holiday hours vary Where: 800 Robson Street, Vancouver (Robson Street and Howe Street) Price: Free for all ages, if you bring your own skates. (Skate rentals are $5, and rentals end 30 minutes before closing time.) Robson Square Ice Rink accepts cash only. Helmets are mandatory for children 12 years and under.
What: The Shipyards’ large, covered outdoor plaza has been converted into a free ice rink for the season. The rink will be open to skating seven days a week from 12 to 7 pm.
The skateable surface is approximately 20,000 sq. ft., including the floor area of the 12,000-sq-ft plaza and the adjacent 8,000-sq-ft summertime water spray area, both of which are covered by a retractable roof. Skaters can either bring their own skates or rent a pair of skates on-site for $7, although quantities are limited. Helmets and skating aids are free.
When: Daily until the end of season Time: 12 to 7 pm Where: The Shipyards Commons, North Vancouver Admission: Free, skate rentals are available at a cost of $7 (quantities are limited)
Eat fresh with farmers’ markets
What: Each week you can look forward to finding locally grown vegetables and fruit, meat and seafood from local ranchers and fishermen, artisan cheese and bread, herbs and seasonal nursery items, baked goods, prepared foods, and artisanal crafts.
When: Open year-round on Saturday Time: 10 am to 2 pm Where: Riley Park Plaza — 50E 30th Avenue, Vancouver; Nat Bailey Stadium – 4601 Ontario Street, Vancouver Admission: Free
What: Open year-round and boasting stalls of fresh, colourful produce, homemade products, and must-try eats. From the ocean, oven, or field — Granville Market has got it all. Grab items to-go or order some grub from one of the many established food vendors at this indoor market. You’re going to leave happy and full.
When: Open year-round, seven days a week Time: 9 am to 7 pm Where: 1661 Duranleau Street, Granville Island Admission: Free
What: Family-owned and operated for nearly 40 years, Richmond Country Farms is the farm stand adjacent to Highway 99 off Steveston. Open from early spring to just ahead of Christmas, the market has a bounty of fresh local produce and prepared goods.
When: Open daily Time: 9 am to 7 pm Where: 12900 Steveston Highway, Richmond Admission: Free
What: Launched in June 2008, this open-air market, situated in the North Parking Lot of Burnaby City Hall, offers visitors an assortment of food and craft stalls to peruse on Saturday mornings every Saturday.
When: Every Saturday Time: 9 am to 2 pm Where: North Parking Lot of Burnaby City Hall (4949 Canada Way at Deer Lake Parkway), Burnaby Admission: Free
What: Established in 2008, the Port Moody Winter Farmers’ Market began as a bi-weekly market in the lobby and courtyard of the Port Moody Rec Centre. Now a weekly market, shoppers can stop by every Sunday for local BC produce, artisan crafts, and delicious baked goods.
When: Every Sunday until April 26, 2020 Time: 10 am to 2 pm Where: Port Moody Recreation Complex – 300 Ioco Road, Port Moody Admission: Free
What: The market features farm-fresh produce, plants, quality crafts from local artists and artisans, gourmet prepared foods, community information, live entertainment, and more.
When: February 1 and 15; March 7 and 21; April 4 and 18 Time: 11 am to 3 pm Where: Belmont Street, New Westminster Admission: Free